A Healthy Lifestyle You Can Maintain!
As I sit here with my pups, enjoying a quite Sunday evening, eating a big bowl of noodles from Chinese takeout, deciphering how to express my thoughts, I can’t help but think how much my perspective has changed over the years.
If you had asked me years ago, if I’d be eating a giant bowl of carbs, not even for a “cheat meal,” late at night on a day I didn’t train, I would have gasped with horror and answered with a firm NO! You could say my approach was extreme.
Here’s the thing though. This is exactly why it took me years to stop yo-yo dieting, to adapt a maintainable lifestyle and to stop the weight fluctuations. This is probably also the reason that so many of those who started their New Years resolutions towards fitness and health, may have already quit.
If there is one lesson you can take away from this blog, I hope it is this…
If you can’t do it for life, don’t do it at all.
So many have adapted this mind-set that carbs are bad. You have to stop eating before a certain time to lose weight. You need to be extreme in your approach. You need to drastically cut calories. A single treat when you feel your body needs it will make you gain weight. Taking one meal a week off and eating till you’re sick is ok though, those calories don’t count… ahem, insert eye roll here…
Keto gets you lean. Eat all the fat.
Intermittent fasting is the answer to fat loss.
Hours of cardio will do the trick.
Cutting out all processed foods is the only way to live.
Gluten free is the way to weight loss.
Can the above principles work to get you to your weight loss goals? If you are in a caloric deficit… sure! But do you enjoy the process? Is it sustainable? Is it good for your body chemistry and for your lifestyle?
The thing is, losing 20lbs may be your goal and it can feel pretty fantastic to achieve that goal, but what is the use if you can’t keep it off. Stress on the body and the metabolism. Frustration for you. Months of wasted work. For what?
Whether you are new to this lifestyle or struggling to find your path, my greatest piece of advice is find something you like, you can do long term and chip away at it daily. Don’t worry about what the newest internet fad says. Don’t rush yourself and your process.
Although it may be more difficult not to see those crazy-quick results you are used to, it certainly will be more rewarding to be able to keep the ones you do obtain.
Are you ready to make a long-term lifestyle change?
- Eliminate two things from your diet and lifestyle that don’t serve your health but you won’t miss too much. If you have a bad habit of drinking a can of pop daily, but it doesn’t provide you with too much satisfaction, cut it out or have a diet instead (and YES diet drinks are FINE in moderation #science).
- Drink more water daily. If you are sitting at one liter per day, work up to 1.5 for week one, 2 for week two, 2.5 for week three, and 3 for week four. Baby steps! Get yourself a big water bottle and track your intake. Water will keep you energized, improve your digestion (hello healthy poops) and allow for better training sessions.
- Start tracking your food. You may know nothing about calories and macros but you can still become educated in what you eat. Downloading a tracking app and inputting your daily food as you go will allow you to become mindful of what you eat. This will also help with making better choices and finding the hidden calories in the foods you’d never expect.
- Get moving! You don’t need to be an expert in the gym to start! Try a few at home workouts (there are a ton of free ones on my YouTube channel), take a spin class, walk your dog more or hire a trainer! You don’t need to spend 6 days at a week -2 hours a day, at the gym to live a healthy life. Sit down and decide what is realistic and maintainable for your schedule. Pick the days you will exercise. Write them out and get sweating. This will not only benefit your physique but it will improve your mood, your physiological health and mental focus too!
- Stop comparing! Maintaining a healthy lifestyle means maintaining a healthy mind and a healthy self-image. Your worth in not directed by the way others live, look and maintain their life. It is 100% ok if you can’t commit to a strict and diligent diet and an intense workout. You do what you can with what you have. Give yourself praise for taking care of your health and know that you are doing enough, despite the effort those around you make. Each week you make progress, use that as your personal motivation to propel forward.
Each week won’t be perfect, know that, expect that and become OK with that. Little by little those small efforts will add up to lifelong maintainable and sustainable habits that will help you live a longer, happier and healthier life.